The Red Wings look to put together back-to-back wins, which the way this year has gone, could be huge for momentum going forward. The Hurricanes come in struggling after a red-hot start, having scored just 4 goals across a 3-game losing streak. It’s a rematch of the 2002 Stanley Cup with old friend Petr Mrazek in goal for Carolina, let’s do this hockey.
Ahhhh the home whites, the way things should be. Oh and these new black Hurricane alternates? Sick. Wings 4th line vs. the Hurricanes top line as the puck is dropped at Little Caesars arena. Few minutes in, Vanek with a nice steal in the corner before sending one in front for Mantha who just missed the net, first chance of the day for either side. Now the Red Wings turned it over in their own end and at the top of the circle, wide open, Brock McGinn missed the net. Hurricanes now all over the Red Wings these last couple of minutes thanks to so many bad turnovers by the Wings. Shots 6-0 Carolina as we hit the 1st TV timeout.
Feels like the entire game has been spent in the Red Wings zone and thanks to Howie, it’s still scoreless. Penalty taken by Dylan Larkin on the back check and we’ll have our first man advantage of the game. Time to see what the worst PP in hockey can do for the Hurricanes here. A couple of shots by Carolina, but no real threat and we remain scoreless. Shots are 13-0 (not a typo) in favor of the Canes as we reach the 2nd TV timeout.
For the shots being what they are, you’d think at least Carolina would be fun to watch tonight, but not really. Pretty much a lull affair up to this point. Nielsen with a shot attempt for Detroit.... and it goes wide. Cholowski follows it up with a shot on goal (FINALLY) nearly 14 minutes into the game and the crowd delivers a loud Bronx cheer, which I love to hear because I can’t believe it has come to this. Red Wings looking a bit better as Mantha sprung LGD for a 2-on-1 with Ras in which Glendening was denied by Mrazek. And right back they come, Abby with a breakaway and he was shut down by Mrazek as he tried to go five hole. Final TV timeout with the Wings finally awake in this one.
Ericsson continuing to show how little of the $4.25M/year he is worth and takes a terrible penalty in the Wings zone. And the worst PP in the league finally gets one here tonight as Justin Faulk snipes one off the post past Howie on their 18th shot of the game. 1-0 Carolina. 1:20 left in the period and honestly getting out of this only down 1 would be impressive. And hey look at that, they did, but not until a last second chance in the slot that Howie came up big on. Man this is tough.
Score: 1-0 CAR
Shots: 21-6 CAR
2nd Period off to a slow start 3 minutes in. Hurricanes still getting shots, Wings still turning it over and not looking good. They just continue to be all over Detroit and Jimmy Howard is standing on his head. 29-7 the shots now as we hit the 1st TV timeout.
Penalty coming up to the Wings, again, as Mantha gets called for holding on a pretty obvious call. A beautiful tic-tac-toe and Micheal Ferland was wide open in the slot, again they go post and in, and it’s 2-0 Hurricanes. They had 2 PP goals all year coming into the game and they now have 2 tonight. Isn’t this fun? Wings with a rare chance as Nielsen backhanded one to the goal, but Bert and AA couldn’t bury it past a sprawling Mrazek. Hurricanes back on the attack and Howie makes the save, 2nd TV timeout.
Again, all Carolina as I’m not sure I’ve ever seen the Red Wings struggle this badly in my life and I truly mean that. Nothing major of note going on however. Carolina is controlling the play, getting pucks on net, the Red Wings turning it over, rinse, repeat. Mantha absolutely rocks Jordan Martinook in Kronwall-like fashion along the half boards and it springs Ehn for a chance where he’s hooked as he gets toward the goal. First Red Wings PP of the game coming up out of the final TV timeout.
Athanasiou uses his speed to go wide and nearly sets up Nielsen (still unsure why he’s on the PP) in front for a goal. Little bit of buzz in the arena now too. Now a terrible play by Nielsen at the blue line leads to a 2-on-1 for the Canes that didn’t even end in a shot attempt. The Wings couldn’t even turn it back the other way because they were all tired and had to change. Just sums up this team tonight in a nutshell. Right before the period Cholowski got a chance on a breakaway, left the pass for Rasmussen, who had a wide open net, and somehow he couldn’t finish. C-Lo drew a penalty on the play with 4 seconds left in the period, so pretty much a full PP coming up to start the 3rd for the Wings who desperately need something, anything.
Shots: 36-12 CAR
Score: 2-0 CAR
1:56 on the PP to start the 3rd for the Wings, have to think they need a goal here to have a shot the way they’ve played to this point. Nielsen not only with a terrible turnover again at the blue line, but then follows it up with an icing on the PP. I just can’t believe he is on the power play ever. Terrible PP that never even got set up, this team is really something. Helm has a chance in front wide open after the puck bounced to him and he put it right into Mrazek’s logo. AA with a beautiful pass on a 2-on-1 to an open Vanek but the puck bounced on him and he hit the post. Easily the best stretch of play from the Wings tonight, but still nothing to show from it. 1st TV timeout.
Carolina has been held without a shot on goal so far in the 3rd as we approach 11 minutes to go. But that doesn’t really matter with the lead they have as the Wings only have 2 shots this period themselves. Sigh. Carolina really tightening up defensively as the Wings are starting to control the play, but can get absolutely nothing going in the offensive end. 2nd TV timeout.
Bam. Just like that we got a brand new game. Athanasiou buries it on yet another 2-on-1 after Nielsen set up Vanek who sauced it over the diving Jaccob Slavin for AA who finished it off. 2-1 with just under 8 minutes left. Red Wings still putting the pressure on after the goal. Rasmussen definitely looks like he’s having his best game with the Red Wings. Another penalty coming up to Carolina as well for boarding. Abdelkader on the PP and I strongly question why he sees any time a man up because he has two bad turnovers as well that disrupt the Wings momentum in the zone. And oh my goodness I can’t believe what just happened. Three chances in front of a wide open net and the Red Wings couldn’t finish it. Athanasiou, Rasmussen and Cholowski all with a chance and they couldn’t score. Faulk and Mrazek with the saves. I can’t believe what I just watched. Another scrum in front of Mrazek seconds later and the Red Wings couldn’t score AGAIN. I am speechless. Final TV timeout. I just don’t know anymore.
3 minutes to go and the Red Wings are still controlling the play. Hurricanes are dropping four back and the Wings can’t set up. BUT HERE WE GO! The Hurricanes tried clearing it and sent it over the boards. Detroit PP with 1:44 to go, this will be a 6-on-4 and this will be your game. Chance after chance now, but the Wings just can’t get a puck on net. That’ll do it. Martinook ends in with an empty-netter with 43 seconds left. 3-1 Canes. Story of the year with this team. Too little, too late.
Score: 3-1 CAR
Shots: 39-21 CAR